Two victims, who police suspect of involvement in another criminal case, are among the suspects arrested as part of the investigation.
Rabat – Moroccan police arrested six sub-Saharan migrants in Dakhla, southern Morocco, for their alleged involvement in a case of kidnapping, forcible confinement with torture, and organizing irregular migration.
The police intervened to arrest the suspects on September 22 after a video went viral on instant messaging applications showing a sub-Saharan with his hands and feet tied.
The man was “undergoing cauterization and voluntary assault with a burning plastic material,” a statement from the General Directorate of National Security (DGSN) said.
Technical expertise and investigation enabled police to identify the victim as well as another individual who the suspects had also abducted.
Searches enabled police to identify four individuals aged between 20 and 46 suspected of perpetrating the criminal acts. They subsequently arrested the suspects.
The suspects allegedly kidnapped and sequestered the two victims as part of a “settling of scores” between two criminal networks, following the failure of an irregular migration operation on August 5.
“The two vicitms had played the role of intermediaries to attract applicants for immigration.”
Six suspects, including the two kidnapping and torture victims, are in custody for further investigation to elucidate the circumstances of the case and determine the ramifications and alleged links of the criminal network.
Morocco has intensified efforts against irregular migration and human trafficking from its borders, which claim the lives of hundreds trying to reach Europe every year.
On Wednesday, police arrested four people near Rabat for their alleged involvement in human trafficking and irregular migration.
In 2019, police arrested 27,317 would-be irregular migrants, including 20,141 foreign nationals.
Moroccan migrants represented 26% of the arrested defendants who tried to immigrate without documents.
The North African country also aborted more than 74,000 undocumented migration attempts during the same period.